Ka-ching! Constellation Contractors to Get More $$

Orion Contractors To Get Major Funding Boost
Aviation Week

Contractors working on NASA’s Orion crew exploration vehicle and its Ares I launcher will get more money this spring — about $1.8 billion for Lockheed Martin’s work on Orion alone — to account for schedule and design changes since the human-rated spacecraft developments started in 2006.

“We’ve matured the design substantially, so there will be new costs because we made it harder to build,” Constellation Program Manager Jeff Hanley says, characterizing the Orion contract modification only as “substantial.”

Pending changes in the Ares I contracts to ATK, Boeing and Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne will reflect schedule slips forced by inadequate funding in fiscal 2009-10, as well as “some minor design improvements or tweaks that we’ve discovered along the way on the engine and on the solids,” Hanley said April 2.

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